I’ve been on the hunt for a good veggie burger recipe after our beloved one changed. I had the recipe bookmarked and decided to make some for the first time since moving to our new house. My heart sank when I discovered that the original recipe was changed. I think the Hubs was let down as well.
I found this new recipe on the Minimalist Baker’s site. I love the recipes I’ve tried from her in the past and I though why not give this one a try. I wasn’t let down.
First you get your rice going. If you’d like to see how I make rice, click here. Now here comes the part where I learned my lesson. The very first time I made this recipe, I decided to use gluten-free breadcrumbs instead of walnuts. Why? Because I was lazy and just didn’t feel like toasting them. The burgers were really dry. So, this time I used walnuts.
The walnuts lent a bit of oiliness to the mixture to help hold everything together. If you cook with walnuts or even eat walnuts, you’ll know that texture I’m talking about. According to my Flavor Thesaurus:
After almond, the second most popular nut in the world. Walnuts are easy to take for granted in cakes and candy, where their wrinkly lobes are often more interesting than their mild flavor. Toasting brings out their full character–stronger nutty notes with a hint of nicotine bitterness. Walnuts work particularly well with other “brown” flavors, such as cinnamon, nutmeg, maple syrup, honey and pears. They can be bought pickled, steeped in syrup, as a liqueur (nocino or vin de noix) and as walnut oil, which makes a great dressing for vegetables and salads.
Now, I don’t know about you but I’ve never thought about walnuts having a “nicotine bitterness.” There is a bit of bitterness when those pesky little flakes are stuck in the wrinkles, but not a nicotine flavor. Maybe I’m the only one?
For those of you who have tree nut allergies I’ve been looking and looking to find a suitable substitute. I thought about macadamia nuts but those are tree nuts as well. The only thing I can think of that compares to the texture of walnuts are sunflower seeds. Don’t take my word for it though. If you do try it, let me know how you get on.
Once you’ve toatsted your walnuts (or substitute), toss them in a food processor with the spices because you’re going to make the meal that’s going to make up your burgers. And it gives off a lovely aroma too.
Next, you mash up your black beans. This the step I found to be the hardest. She says to use a fork to mash the beans up, but maybe I was just a wimp because it was hard! I ended up using a potato masher and using most of my weight to mash them. Then add everything to a bowl: the walnut mixture, rice, onions, beans, everything. Once you mix everything together, taste the mixture and make sure it tastes the way you want it to. Just a fair warning though, you’ll need to hold yourself back from eating it straight out of the bowl. I had to fend off the Hubs and little one a few times.
The last time I made this I used a 1/4 measuring cup (like she says to), and made the little balls that way. They didn’t hold together (partly because I used breadcrumbs instead of walnuts and me doing something else wrong). So this time I decided to use the Hubs’ hamburger-patty-maker-thingy.
I spooned the mixture in this contraption and pressed out six good-sized patties.
You cook them in the pan, or grill if you’re brave enough, until they’re done and then serve them between two slices of bread, buns, lettuce cups, wraps, or whatever you choose. We decided not to have bread because they were just that big.
The veggie burgers were full of bbq goodness. The most important part is that they were moist and held together. I think if you have a carnivore in your house, this would be a good dish to introduce them to. Who doesn’t like burgers? There are no fancy vegan ingredients that might scare them off or solicit the question “what is that?”. The ingredients are things everyone has in their pantry–carnivore, vegan, vegetarian, pescatarian, or paleo. They were filling and are great for lunch the next day.
On a final note, I will advise you not to eat two burgers plus fries and then go run several miles on the treadmill. I made that mistake and was burping the whole time. It’s hard when you have to try and decide which direction to blow your burpy bbq air without trying to offend anyone around you!